The Ben Simmons saga continues in Philly with no end in sight. Although several teams have expressed interest in the Sixers' three-time All-Star point guard, no team has managed to meet Daryl Morey's asking price at this time.
As the 76ers want another All-Star caliber player in return for Simmons, only so many teams can make that type of offer. Recently, ESPN's Stephen A. Smith reported that the Brooklyn Nets could've been in the mix as they possess not one but three All-Stars that would certainly interest the Sixers.
Kevin Durant, who just signed a major extension, would obviously be off the table. And James Harden, somebody the Sixers had an interest in last season, is also ready to strike a long-term deal in Brooklyn too, making him untouchable.
That leaves Kyrie Irving as the third star, which Smith claims Brooklyn would've traded in a deal for Ben Simmons if the team's leader Kevin Durant would approve it.
"Here's another thing that could've happened," Smith ranted. "Kyrie could've ended up in Philly. Sean Marks couldn't do that because KD wasn't having it. KD's like, 'Kyrie Irving ain't going no damn place.' Philadelphia might've said no, but I assure you -- if it were not for Kevin Durant, the Brooklyn Nets would be interested in making that deal."
An Irving-Simmons swap is something many have floated as a good idea for both teams as each player would make a good fit for the opposite team. However, Brooklyn essentially landed Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving as a package deal a few summers ago.
Therefore, the chances of the Sixers landing Iriving through the way of a Simmons-centric trade package was slim from the moment the Sixers made the three-time All-Star available on the trade block.
The Sixers will more than likely find a team to take on Simmons for a fair asking price, but it surely won't be the Brooklyn Nets as they will stick with their dominant big three in Durant, Harden, and Irving.
Justin Grasso covers the Philadelphia 76ers for Sports Illustrated. You can follow him for live updates on Twitter: @JGrasso_.